Your Fitbit could become your personal running coach
A new patent application shows how you could create custom audio workouts to match your training goals
Fitbit has registered a patent for a system that would let you create custom training program for runners with audio instructions. Whether you're a trail runner, a road runner, or a hiker, the new system will pick and mix exercises to create a workout that'll help you meet your goals.
The patent (application number 16/946315, which you can find through the US Patents and Trademarks Office) explains that the custom workouts would suit anyone who doesn't have the time or money for a personal trainer, but finds regular workout videos too inflexible.
Custom workouts could be made to target a particular body area (if you want to work on your core stability for trail running, for example), or a certain aspect of fitness, such as stamina or pace.
Time to get personal
If you have a subscription to Fitbit Premium (or recently bought a Fitbit watch and have a free trial), you'll have access to a hefty catalog of workout programs. These include videos that you can follow at home for activities like yoga and weights, plus audio workouts for outdoor activities that you can listen to using your best running headphones.
You can choose which audio coaching sessions you want to follow, but they're all pre-recorded, so you might not find something that fits your exact needs, and you may get tired of repeating the same handful over and over. Fitbit's patent explains that the new system could "deliver a fitness experience [...] that adapts to the user, rather than leaving the user bored or overworked with linear media experiences."
Of course, a patent isn't a guarantee that we'll eventually see this tech in a consumer product (Fitbit has previously registered a patent for a health-tracking smart ring, for example), but we're hopeful that we might see custom running workouts pop up in a future Fitbit Premium update in the coming months.
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Cat is the editor of Advnture, She’s been a journalist for 13 years, and was fitness and wellbeing editor on TechRadar before joining the Advnture team in 2022. She’s a UK Athletics qualified run leader, and in her spare time enjoys nothing more than lacing up her shoes and hitting the roads and trails (the muddier, the better).
By Cat Ellis